Way back in March (I think, I don’t really remember and I don’t feel like going back through my archives though I probably will anyway because I’m annoyingly accurate like that) or something, I was talked into signing up for 10k distance in The Giant Race. Okay, so I wasn’t really talked into it. It was merely suggested, I halfheartedly hemmed and hawed even though I was already considering doing one, just not right now, and eventually gave in, since I was already thinking of doing one eventually anyway.
Interesting sidebar: I’m notoriously stubborn and it’s pretty hard to convince me to do something unless I’m already leaning that way. Then if anything goes wrong, I can blame it on the other person.
Anywho, so I set out training in preparation of this 10k (or 6.2 miles of delusional hopefulness, however you want to describe it) and felt pretty good about my chances. I did manage to hit 5.5 miles once back in May, I think? I was on a high. I WAS RUNNING!
Aaaaaaaaand then things started going downhill from there.
My training scheduled sputtered, taking days off while the boyfriend was visiting and then again to make the trip down south for Lindsey’s graduation. From there I was pretty unpredictable with my running. Some weeks I’d hit all of my scheduled run days and others I just couldn’t pay myself to think about slipping into my shoes to run. As a result, my stamina dropped back to the my January levels and I was suddenly struggling to hit 2 miles before needing to stop to walk. After finally getting back up to 3 miles, I flew off to Seattle. Basically, I sucked at training. It was hard and I was frustrated with myself and my seemingly turtle-like progress.
How was I ever going to run 6.2 miles if I could barely huff and puff my way through 3? That goal seemed so hard, so far and unreachable. Eventually I convinced myself that it didn’t matter if I ran the entire distance; just that I finish. There are some marathoners that have to walk part of the race but they still ran a marathon. And so I eased up on myself and gave myself permission to walk if I needed to so long as I ran across the finish line. I was feeling good about my decision. Great, even. Then I stopped running. The entire two weeks leading up to the race. Because I am a GENIUS!!
Race day arrived and I was a ball of nerves but okay since I was okay with walking. I woke up, headed out, and then proceeded to get stuck in traffic less than a mile away from the parking lot. My pre-race jitters turned to “Am I going to make the start?” jitters. I was completely stressed but felt better seeing other runners running towards the starting gate too. Thankfully I was set to start towards the end of the pack anyway with a sub-10 mile time, I was able to make it just fine. With my iPod playing, I relaxed into my race and just kept running.
I was able to keep a comfortable pace (about 12 minutes per mile) and just focused on enjoying the run. I tried not to look for the mile markers because I figured I’d start to tire once I knew how far I ran but next thing I knew, I was at the split and then sometime later I passed the 4 mile mark. I was surprised but felt really good so I kept running. Then I past the 5 mile mark and I realized I was almost done and I had ran every mile so far, and since I was only a mile and some change out, I HAD to keep running. And so I did. The adrenaline started pumping and I couldn’t stop smiling and all I wanted to do was high five everyone I passed along the way.
People, I ran the entire 6.2 miles of delusional hopefulness. I still can’t believe I managed that but I did. And it was amazing. Sure all of my race course photos look like I’m walking and I was suffering from the post-race euphoria, as evidenced by this tweet:
But I was so proud of myself. Even though I barely trained, I still showed up and gave it my best. Plus I accomplished something I know I’ll look back on and be proud of (it also doesn’t hurt that I finished in 1:21:21, under my personal goal of 1:30:00!). Needless to say, I’m looking forward to my next race, whatever that will be. And I’m totally open to running another 10k. It’s a great step towards eventually tackling that half marathon one day. One day.
This is the look of accomplishment. Or possibly delusion.
Kind of weird how it’s the same expression, huh?